Strategic Fashion Marketing Assignment
Fashion industry is a competitive market, which permanently renews and adjusts to the technological innovations and marketing trends. Nowadays fashion brands are applying various marketing strategies for remaining competitive, combining them for delivering an integrated experience for their customers. However, the key to being popular in fashion is to innovate and this implies fashion marketing innovation also. Fashion companies that have the potential to adjust fashion marketing trends, such as creating an in-store home-like environment or developing fashion blogs, to their business are successful now and will be able to differentiate in five years from now from their competitors.
One significant fashion marketing trend nowadays that shapes the image of international brands is the home-like retail decor (Sherling, 2013). Fashion retailers are trying various strategies for bringing the customers inside their stores and the decorations represent one such strategy. Making customers feel comfortable is an important aspect in any industry, which is achieved through various tactics. Such tactics include good customer service, polite sells assistants, proximity, and a welcoming, friendly environment. A home-like environment, including comfortable sofas or simulating the wardrobe living connects the visitors with their personal life, creating like this an engaging experience and a dynamic and original interaction between the targeted shoppers and the fashion brand. A home-like decoration in a fashion store provides a personalized experience, wherein the customers can feel at home, confident and relaxed. Like this, they can try out various apparels, in the intimacy and comfort of a hospitable setting.
Creating a home-like environment in the fashion stores brings clients closer to their favored brands, creating a customer engagement. Such an environment is an effective strategy for generating customer loyalty and positive word of mouth, which can enhance the productivity of fashion brands’ businesses. Feeling good and welcomed in a home-like setting, the customers will return to the stores that provide such experience, telling their friends, relatives and acquaintances about their pleasant fashion experience in a home-like fashion store.
This contemporary fashion marketing trend is currently incipient, being available in few international fashion brands’ stores, such as Lee Cooper, which confers a British home-like experience or Louis Vuitton, which proposes a classy French home-like environment (“Let’s Go Shopping”, n.d.). In five years, this fashion marketing trend will be influential in the global fashion industry because more fashion retailers would understand the benefit of engaging their clients through a relaxing and comfortable setting. Such a setting allows the clients to rest for a while and reenergize for starting shopping again and in the same time it eliminates any inhibitions that they might have, encouraging them to go to fitting cabins and to buy various fashion items. The globalization is a challenge for the international fashion brands that threatens their original qualities and values because of the process of marketing standardization, applied to suit the global tastes (Lamb, Hair and McDaniel, 2012). In this context, fashion companies will tend to become colder, proposing a standardized message and experiences to their customers throughout the world. Applying this fashion marketing trend, of designing the fashion stores to transmit a home-like feeling, the fashion companies could adapt their international stores to the local typical houses, for delivering a hospitable, warm and candid shopping experience.
Nowadays, consumers are more experienced, they are looking for unique, customized shopping experiences and they seek to be engaged in their shopping activities (McDonald, 2012). A standardized shopping experience is something expeditious, which is unlikely to produce any engagement to the customers, influencing them to seek this outcome elsewhere. In a global economy, wherein international brands will propose similar offers, the customer needs to feel special. Knowing how to connect with the customer is the key to attaining customer satisfaction and brand loyalty. In five years, these aspects will be even more poignant, and this is why a customized home-like experience will be required and influential in fashion marketing.
Delivering fresh and dynamic online experiences is just the beginning of a new journey into the future of the fashion marketing. Currently, fashion brands are using social media platforms such as Facebook or Twitter to attract their customers, transforming them from fan pages into online or store shoppers. However, as stated previously, customers are becoming more critic every day and in five years from now their shopping experiences will tend to be more sophisticated due to the increasing technological advancements. Blogging is a fashion marketing strategy that delivers customers more information about fashion trends, about must haves and fashion errors. By checking the fashion blogs, customers stay informed with the latest trends, the “dos” and “don’ts” of the fashion and they become more careful about their fashion choices. Blogging, this fashion marketing strategy, is the new Vogue, or Elle magazines, which several decades ago were the only fashion influential groups who could instigate audiences on following specific fashion trends. Nowadays, fashion bloggers write about what they consider fashionable, recommending specific outfits, belonging to particular brands and generating increased request for the recommended outfits (Marketing Trend: The power of Blogs, 2012). Being mentioned in fashion blogs brings considerable benefits to the fashion brands. However, this is an indirect and uncontrolled marketing mechanism, which can generate positive buzz around a fashion brand, negative buzz, if the fashion brand receives a unfavorable review, or no buzz at all, if the fashion brand is not mentioned in the popular fashion brands.
In fact, because internet is a tool that everybody can use, it represents a challenge for fashion brands, as their names can be harmed or not mentioned at all, as stated before, which is not good for business. Fashion brand can take a stand and control how they are mentioned in blogs, by creating their own fashion blogs. Internet is useful tool that can enhance companies’ visibility, making customers more aware of what they have to offer. By developing their own fashion blogs, fashion companies can communicate to their consumers in a dynamic manner, providing updated information about what to wear, how and when to wear specific trendy outfits.
In five years, shoppers will need more information for their fashion choices and the online fashion blogs will be the places that they will go to for finding fashion information. Together with a dynamic social media presence, fashion blogging can contribute to developing an integrated online fashion marketing experience, increasing the business performance of the fashion brands that will utilize this strategy.
As the consumers become more sophisticated every day, they search for customized experiences and increased information for helping them to decide on what to purchase in terms of fashion items. This essay described how fashion marketing trends such as creating an in-store home-like environment and enhancing the consumers through fashion blogs are effective for the fashion companies’ business performance. Moreover, the essay presented how these fashion marketing trends can be influential in five years, helping the companies that apply them in their marketing mix to overpass the future challenges, while boosting the productivity of their business.
Lamb, C., Hair, J. and McDaniel, C. 2013. Marketing. 12th edition. Mason: South Western Cengage Learning.
Let’s go shopping. N.d. [Online] Available at < http://www.morrisselvatico.com/lets-go-shopping-2/>. [Accessed on 14 April 2014].
Marketing Trend: The power of blogs by Fashion United. 2013. [Online] Available at <http://www.hall-five.com/intelligence/fashion-bloggers>. [Accessed on 14 April 2014].
McDonald, K. 2013. Crafting the customer experience for people not like you: How to delight and engage the customers your competitors don’t understand. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Sherling, D. 2013. 2013 fashion retail consumer trends. [Online] Available at < http://www.slideshare.net/DianaSherling/2013-fashion-retail-consumer-trends-ds>. [Accessed on 14 April 2014].